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Project-based learning in an internship program: A qualitative study of related roles and their motivational attributes

Abstract

The roles of task, learner, and mentor in a successful project-based instructional technology (IT) internship program were studied in light of contemporary motivation theories. Interns in four different locations were asked to apply their academic experiences in constructing real projects at work under the supervision of their site mentors and academic advisor. Data included tape-recorded intern interviews, status-review notes, e-portfolios, mentor interviews, and mentor evaluations. Data were collected over 6 semesters, from 18 different cases, 4 of which are highlighted here. The study considered the roles of task, learner, and mentors as they are needed to make the most of project-based internship programs. Implications for the design and development of internship and capstone programs, and specifically successful student performance in internship programs, are considered.

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Correspondence to Abbas Johari.

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Johari, A., Bradshaw, A.C. Project-based learning in an internship program: A qualitative study of related roles and their motivational attributes. Education Tech Research Dev 56, 329–359 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-006-9009-2

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Keywords

  • Contemporary motivation theories
  • IT capstone internships
  • Open-ended learning environments
  • Project-based learning
  • Situated learning environments